Tuesday, February 18, 2014
West Va. Bill Introduced to Ease Flood Insurance Hike
Posted: Feb 17, 2014 8:27 PM ESTUpdated: Feb 18, 2014 8:36 AM EST
Relief could be on the way for thousands of home owners in the state of West Virginia.
The Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012 has sent flood insurance premiums through the roof, but legislators are looking for a solution to what many are calling a devastating problem.
Senator Rocky Fitzsimmons introduced a bill in the West Virginia senate Monday that would give homeowners some relief. Senate Bill 621 creates a private market for flood insurance in the mountain state.
Right now, Fitzimmons said many can't afford to insure their homes and the dramatic increase in premiums is preventing people across the state from selling their homes. The cost of flood insurance has become a deal breaker for many.
Through this bill, he's hoping to drive those premiums down.
"We hope that by creating a private flood insurance market through competition that will result in lower flood insurance premiums for West Virginians and create some relief," Fitzsimmons says.
The bill will authorize private insurers to offer flood insurance, and they are hoping that rate is more affordable than what's offered now. Fitzsimmons said they will try to develop that market over the next few years.
He added that flood risks in West Virginia are very different than in coastal areas and our insurance rates should reflect that.
Senate Bill 621 has been referred to the Committee on Banking and Insurance.